Local Anesthetic Toxicity

Local Anesthetic Toxicity

While generally safe, local anesthetic agents can be toxic if used in excessive doses or administered improperly. Even when administered properly, patients may still experience unintended reactions to local anesthetics.

Excessive doses may be unintentionally administered in several ways.

  1. Repetitive (small) doses of local anesthetic to achieve an adequate level of anesthesia may lead to eventual administration of toxic doses.
  2. Injection of anesthesia in a confined space may result in excessive fluid pressure that may damage nerves.
  3. Doses intended for epidural or intra-support-tissue administration may be accidentally delivered as intravascular injection, resulting in accelerated systematic absorption.

The toxic effects of local anesthetics can be classified by localized and systemic effects.

Read more about Local Anesthetic Toxicity:  Management

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